In announcing its 1998 results, (see below) Lex Service revealed it had a cash war chest of more than £120 million to spend on growing its motoring services. While the company traditionally never comments on speculation, it is known that when RAC Motoring Services was put up for sale last year it was interested in the organisation. However, the company believed that Cendant's £450 million bid for the company was 'over the odds'. Other names in the frame include Centrica, owner of British Gas and Goldfish financial services, venture capital groups Cinven, the Prudential's PPM Ventures arm and Schroder Ventures and GE Capital.
After the Lex Service results were announced chief executive Andrew Harrison said: 'We are looking at the RAC, but we wouldn't pay a silly price.' And a company spokesman added: 'Our name was linked to RAC Motoring Services originally. It is an attractive business. It is a motoring services business and we are looking to expand out motoring services businesses. But acquisition must be at the right price. The Cendant price was over the odds.'